(Ahlul Bayt News Agency) - D.I.Khan is not a far away, small, little known city of Pakistan. Situated between Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhua, it is a city with a history of its own. The nature-lovers often refer to this city as ‘Dera Phulon da Sehra’ – The crown of flowers’ city. The people of this city are known to be simple, loving and hospitable. The city is also very important from a defense point of view. Through Mianwali and Bhakkar, the routes going through D.I.Khan lead to some of our main reservoirs and installations. Then there is Tank which connects the city to South Waziristan’s people and culture. Going further leads to Pashtun’s historical monuments and villages which go all the way to Balochistan’s Zhob.
As a result, sectarian violence and terrorism are nothing new for the police and law enforcements of the city. Most of our high educated men and women from foreign universities’ have convinced themselves the terrorism problem began after 9/11 and the American invasion of Afghanistan. It is also commonly believed that drone attacks have intensified the terrorism problem and if America stops the drone attacks and retreats from Afghanistan, the problem will end. For people like these, I sometimes wish I could arrange a Crash Course which might put some sense into them about the fact that Pakistan’s so-called sectarian violence did not start after 9/11. The first brick in this wall of terrorism was put in place by Gen. Zia ul Haq himself in 1979. Then Iraq attacked Iran and the war lead to the formation of supporters from both sides in Pakistan. Gen. Zia was worried that all the political groups would unite and cause his downfall.
Using executions and public whippings as his main tools, he continued his attempt to eradicate the effects of the Iran-Iraq war in Pakistan. He believed his best hope, in this time, to be the extremist Islamists who taught youngsters to follow the path of “martyrdom” instead of living in peace and harmony with each other. In the early 1980s, D.I.Khan, like many other cities in Pakistan, fell to the heat of the sectarian violence supported by Zia ul Haq. This violence has only intensified since then. Because of this our government has always been in need of police officers who are aware of the history of the violence, are willing to implement justice in cases of these attacks and are quick thinkers.
In the light of this history of our country, the media and our political leadership is showing the height of ignorance on the matter of Monday night’s attack on the D.I.Khan Central Jail. The attack consisted of a large number of Taliban attackers who arrived in 20 cars and took total control of the century old central jail which had been built during the English occupation of India. Once inside, they used the megaphones to call out the prisoners whom they needed to free. They were inside the Jail for over 5 hours in total and managed to take 200 prisoners with them when they left. The government of the only Islamic Nuclear State of its kind in the region was nowhere to be seen! Now, as always, a Committee has been formed which will investigate and things, but what will happen after that? We all know nothing will happen.
The formation of the inquiry committee to gloss over their embarrassment at their inaction is almost even worse a step after the long list of bad decisions. This is because several more trustworthy newspapers and newspaper agencies have published dated documents which indicate different intelligence agencies had warned the relevant people that Dera Ismail’s Central Jail might come under attack just as Bannu’s had the previous year.
Ever since TV Journalism started in our country, it seems the reporters’ attention and anger is reserved for our politicians alone. I do not, at all, intend to defend the politicians’ actions, but we must also remember that the Police is an organization in itself. The main job of this government funded organization is to ensure peace and prosperity in the city. The policemen are recruited. They are trained well. After this they are posted all over the country which is followed by step by step promotions and finally retirement. After retirement they get a life long pension and other facilities. The organization’s rules and permissions were made and refined over the centuries.
When an Intelligence Agency provides a province’s police and management with the possibility of an attack, they are not, in the light of this danger, required to wait for orders or permissions from that province’s political leaders. They are required to review their resources and then order back up as required in order to effectively deal with the threat. But after reporting events like Monday night’s for years, I am forced to conclude our management and police is not used to making decisions themselves in times of crisis.
This problem of the security agencies’ total disability at performing their jobs is becoming more of an issue than public corruption and steps should be taken to stop this. If not, after Dera Ismail Khan’s jail, Haripur’s will be next and then this chain of events will never end. The Americans will leave Afghanistan after 2014. On the media we will call this ‘Islam’s victory’. We will be extremely naïve if we believe that after ‘defeating’ a ‘super-power’ like America, the Mujahideen will put away their weapons and start farming, cooking and protecting our homes! The armies of ‘fataheen’ [winners] will continue on their path after this long-waited victory. Those with the finances and resources will move out into ‘safer countries’ and it will be just us and the ‘winners’ left here.
The fact of the matter is we can put Shakespeare’s works into Urdu. Whether the translation is good or bad, that’s his luck. We can commentate in Urdu from the commentary platform during a cricket match, but we cannot translate cricket into Urdu.